A Cost-Cost Analysis

"In a report analyzing the economics of protecting a threatened fish in the Pacific Northwest, the Bush administration this month deleted all references to possible monetary benefits" from conservation. The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service report included the estimated habitat protection cost - $230 to $300 million over 10 years - but omitted "55 pages that detailed the benefits of protecting bull trout." The benefits, according to a consulting firm, would include "revenue from sport fishing, reduced drinking water costs and increased water for irrigation farmers," totaling some $215 million over 20 to 30 years. A Fish and Wildlife Service official said the benefits analysis was deleted because "it did not conform to analytical standards."